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Discussion Starter #1
Hey there I'm wondering how people feel about the i3 in icy winter conditions as I am planning to relocate part time to Portland Oregon. I see quite a few i3 vehicles on the road up there but I also see a ton of Subarus and other AWD vehicles. Question is there is a lot of rain / fog / turning to ice overnight in the Portland area....how do these cars handle? My i3 is perfect in San Diego but not too sure if it would be useable in Portland winters much....especially since I will be in the west hills area.....thanks in advance....
 

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2018 i3
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Hey there I'm wondering how people feel about the i3 in icy winter conditions as I am planning to relocate part time to Portland Oregon. I see quite a few i3 vehicles on the road up there but I also see a ton of Subarus and other AWD vehicles. Question is there is a lot of rain / fog / turning to ice overnight in the Portland area....how do these cars handle? My i3 is perfect in San Diego but not too sure if it would be useable in Portland winters much....especially since I will be in the west hills area.....thanks in advance....
What year is your i3?

I live in SE PDX and work in the west hills. Having owned multiple I3s since 2014, I have found it was nice to have the snow tires, but rarely required. Maybe twice I really felt they were reasonably needed? All the other times my i3 handled comparably to my other vehicle experiences, once the regen picks up on the slipping and drops out they do very well. Just be prepared for the first time you let off the accel pedal, as it will try to regen once or twice before killing all regen and behaving like a normal car.

I also have the BMW tire chains for the I3, but I've only had one instance where I thought they were needed in addition to the snow tires. Usually just carry them in the car as a backup or in case things get worse than usual.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
What year is your i3?

I live in SE PDX and work in the west hills. Having owned multiple I3s since 2014, I have found it was nice to have the snow tires, but rarely required. Maybe twice I really felt they were reasonably needed? All the other times my i3 handled comparably to my other vehicle experiences, once the regen picks up on the slipping and drops out they do very well. Just be prepared for the first time you let off the accel pedal, as it will try to regen once or twice before killing all regen and behaving like a normal car.

I also have the BMW tire chains for the I3, but I've only had one instance where I thought they were needed in addition to the snow tires. Usually just carry them in the car as a backup or in case things get worse than usual.
Wow great detailed answer thank you! I have a 2017 for San Diego but I might get a second one for PDX as I don't really don't anticipate "commuting" between SAN and PDX.

So tell me more about this regen "dropping out" ?? The brake regen will sense slippage and shut down?? I had no idea. I don't think I can recall that happening except maybe going over potholes or weird bumps here in SAN as we just don't ever have ice.
 

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Achtung! Hochspannung!
2018 i3
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What year is your i3?

I live in SE PDX and work in the west hills. Having owned multiple I3s since 2014, I have found it was nice to have the snow tires, but rarely required. Maybe twice I really felt they were reasonably needed? All the other times my i3 handled comparably to my other vehicle experiences, once the regen picks up on the slipping and drops out they do very well. Just be prepared for the first time you let off the accel pedal, as it will try to regen once or twice before killing all regen and behaving like a normal car.

I also have the BMW tire chains for the I3, but I've only had one instance where I thought they were needed in addition to the snow tires. Usually just carry them in the car as a backup or in case things get worse than usual.
Wow great detailed answer thank you! I have a 2017 for San Diego but I might get a second one for PDX as I don't really don't anticipate "commuting" between SAN and PDX.

So tell me more about this regen "dropping out" ?? The brake regen will sense slippage and shut down?? I had no idea. I don't think I can recall that happening except maybe going over potholes or weird bumps here in SAN as we just don't ever have ice.
Yep, almost exactly like what it does over potholes or big bumps where the rear tires lose traction. But it stays off if it thinks it is true traction loss, whereas with a pothole it will recover fairly quickly.

A 2018 or 2019 will actually handle the slippery ground even better than the 2014-2017 cars do. The DSC got revamped in 2018, and it responds much faster and I have noticed the difference this year in my 2018 over my previous cars for sure. Takeoff ability on slippery roads has been much improved in the newer cars, on the 2014-2016 cars I owned I would sometimes need traction mode to get a bit of wheel slippage, it would just totally stop power delivery if you didn't. The 2018 gradually ramps the power output so it gets you rolling much easier, even without traction mode.


One caveat, all my cars had 19" wheels with all season tires. If you have the 20" wheel package, I would definitely recommend a set of snow tires/wheels. The 20" wheels run summer tires, and some coworkers with the 20" had much scarier experiences with the I3 in the winter.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Yep, almost exactly like what it does over potholes or big bumps where the rear tires lose traction. But it stays off if it thinks it is true traction loss, whereas with a pothole it will recover fairly quickly.

A 2018 or 2019 will actually handle the slippery ground even better than the 2014-2017 cars do. The DSC got revamped in 2018, and it responds much faster and I have noticed the difference this year in my 2018 over my previous cars for sure. Takeoff ability on slippery roads has been much improved in the newer cars, on the 2014-2016 cars I owned I would sometimes need traction mode to get a bit of wheel slippage, it would just totally stop power delivery if you didn't. The 2018 gradually ramps the power output so it gets you rolling much easier, even without traction mode.


One caveat, all my cars had 19" wheels with all season tires. If you have the 20" wheel package, I would definitely recommend a set of snow tires/wheels. The 20" wheels run summer tires, and some coworkers with the 20" had much scarier experiences with the I3 in the winter.
OK that's good advice...thanks again for the detailed answer. I had the 20s on my 2015 i3 but got the standard 19s on my 2017. I don't think I have ever thought about DSC in my i3s.
 

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I've tried my i3 in a snow covered parking lot with my winter tires installed. From a stop, even if you floor the go pedal, it senses the slip and limits the power so you start out fairly slow. Over the years, I've found the car decent in the winter here (southern NE). I grew up in upstate NY, where snow and rear wheel drive cars were common, which probably helped!
 
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